Tags: GMO | foods | genetically | modified | labeling | organic | David Suzuki

Simple Tricks to Avoiding Genetically Modified Foods

By Lynn Allison   |   Wednesday, 22 Jan 2014 08:22 AM

Here’s a scary fact: The effect on the human body of genetically modified food has never been scientifically assessed – but 80 percent of our packaged food contains DNA-manipulated ingredients.

Even worse, genetically modified foods (commonly called “GMO”) are not labeled as such, making it difficult to avoid them. Legislation requiring labeling has been defeated with the help of giant food manufacturers.

Scientists genetically modify crops in order to improve a plant’s resistance to pests, increase yield, and reduce maturation time. The problem is we don’t know what these foods are doing to our health; not a single human clinical trial on the effects of GMO crops has been published.

“The experiments haven’t been done, and now we have become the guinea pigs,” noted Canadian geneticist David Suzuki tells Newsmax Health. “Anyone who says, ‘We know that is perfectly safe,’ is either unbelievably stupid or deliberately lying.”

Jayson Calton, a Harvard- and Yale-trained nutritionist, co-authored a book with his wife Mira, also a nutritionist, called Rich Food, Poor Food, which outlines the potential dangers of GMO products.

Their advice is to stick to organic, fresh foods, or those grown locally, and to avoid GMO products. Remember that conventionally raised dairy, meat, and farmed fish often come from animals fed GMO corn, alfalfa, or soy.

Although GMO products are not labeled, the Caltons say there is a trick can help you locate GMO fruits and vegetables. Look for the number on the sticker on the produce, which is called a PLU or product lookup number. If the PLU is a four-digit number starting with a 3 or 4, it means that the produce is not GMO but has been grown on a conventional farm that uses chemicals and pesticides.

If the sticker number has five digits beginning with a 9, it means the product has been organically grown without chemicals, pesticides, or genetic modification. “You can purchase these foods with confidence,” says Calton.

But produce marked with a five-digit code beginning with 8 are GMO crops. “They have been grown unnaturally through genetic modification,” says Calton.

Boost Your Odds of Avoiding GMO Foods
Because GMO foods are so common and are not labeled, it’s almost impossible to avoid them entirely. However, these fruits and vegetables are rarely genetically modified: onions, pineapples, avocadoes, peas, asparagus, mangoes, eggplant, kiwi, cantaloupe, cabbage, sweet potatoes, grapefruit, watermelon, and mushrooms.

Produce more likely to be GMO includes: apples, celery, bell peppers, peaches, strawberries, nectarines, grapes, spinach, lettuce, cucumbers, blueberries, potatoes, green beans, kale/collard greens, sweet corn, yellow squash, zucchini, cherries, and hot peppers.

The complete version of this article first appeared in Health Radar. To read more, CLICK HERE.

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